Dragar Monopoly

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Dragar Monopoly
MONOPOLIVM DRAGARANIVM
5638RH - 6315RH
[[Image:{{{picture}}}|230px]]
Flag of Dragar Monopoly Coat of Arms of Dragar Monopoly
A common Dragar banner The circular dragon
State Motto {{{nation_motto}}}
(Hallish: {{{nation_motto_hallish}}})
State Anthem {{{nation_anthem}}}
(Hallish: {{{nation_anthem}}})
Where in the world is Dragar Monopoly?
Languages Pastanan
Dragaric
Other regional languages
Founding Date Conclave of Valance (5638RH)
Demonym Dragar or Dragaric
Government Commercial and defensive decentralised confederation
Divisions {XX} states
Capital Valance (Valantine Conclave 5638-6187)
Cedelphia (6187-6315)
Largest City Valance
Population {{{population}}}
Currency Draco, Florin, and several other local currencies
Historical events
First Conclave of Valance
Sack of Lasino
Lanavium Wall completed
Draco-Parnethian War
Auresia joins the Monopoly
Conclave of Solanos Mor
Dragar Imperium established
Siege of {XX}
Conclave of Caparicum
Dragar Schism
Confederation of Cadria established
Cedelphia Declaration
5638
5683
5688
5731-5734
5760

6196


6234
6255
6315
Preceded by:
Succceded by:
Today part of:

The Dragar Monopoly (Pastanan: Monopolium Dragarianum) was a commercial and military confederation of states in northern Anaria created during the tumultuous Migration Period of the 57th century and lasting until its subsummation into the Auresian Empire in 6315. Growing from a small number of states in Pastana in the 5630s, the Monopoly grew to incorporate states throughout the Medio and northern Anaria. At its peak during the 61st century the Monopoly was made up of over 250 states of varying size and political disposition, with Monopoly territory dominating northern Anaria Major and Minor, stretching from the Western Strait to the Settant Sea.

The Monopoly grew to prominence after the downfall of the Orkanan Realm and the retreat of the Parnethian Empire during the Migration Period, where the mass movement of peoples from across Anaria provided a uniquely advantageous opportunity for the establishment of an interconnected web of coastal city states for the benefit of mutual aid and security. After the Migrations came to an end in the 57th century, the Monopoly had risen to become the dominant economic and maritime power in northern Anaria and continued to expand well into the 7th millennium. It was during the late 62nd century that one of the leading states, Auresia, grew to eclipse the Monopoly's traditional leaders in Pastana and slowly assumed an increasingly direct control over the Monopoly. Known as the 'Dragar Imperium', the final century of the Monopoly saw its confederative credentials increasingly challenged by the imperial aspirations of Auresia, which eventually led to the Dragar Schism and the subsequent withdrawal of many states, including the Pastanan states, from the Monopoly. In 6315 the Cedelphia Declaration officially abolished the Dragar Monopoly, with Emperor Elrood I formally annexing the remaining Monopoly states into the Auresian Empire.

Throughout its seven hundred year existence most states of the Monopoly enjoyed a great deal of autonomy, operating their own legal systems and political independence with little centralised authority - until the establishment of the Dragar Imperium began to centralise power in Auresian hands. The Monopoly states, ranging from independent city states and principalities to kingdoms and even an Empire, retained their own head of state and domestic government, but elected a representative to sit on the Conclave, which would meet at various locations across the Monopoly, and formed the executive body of the confederation, although its powers were limited.

The legacy of the Dragar Monopoly remains a contentious issue today, with many modern Anarian states claiming the ancient legitimacy leadership of the Monopoly conveyed; chief among them the Anisoran Empire and Auresia. Nevertheless, one of the most significant legacies of the Monopoly today is the spread of the Dragar languages to northern Anaria Major, with Ancient Pastanan acting as the lingua franca of the Monopoly for much of its existence; as well as the spread of Orkanan throughout the region. As the foundational history of the Monopoly, the Historia Genitum Dragarum (The History of the Dragaric Peoples) by Carlotto di Carneva, argues, the Monopoly is heralded as being the foundation point of the Dragaric culture that links many Dragaric speaking peoples of northern Anaria today.

Contents

Etymology

History

The origins of the Dragar Monopoly can be traced back to the 56th century and the Orkano-Parnethian Wars which saw the Orkanan Realm of Stoldavia and the Parnethian Empire engage in a series of conflicts over a myriad of issues including religious and conversion rights, trade, and territorial claims. Fought through a number of proxies, the conflicts eventually precipitated the break away of many states in Pastana from Parnethian rule as well as their subsequent realignment to the Orkanan sphere of influence. With the newfound independence from Parnethia and increasing commercial links to Stoldavia, as well as politically motivated conversions to the Orkanan religion, the Pastanan states banded together for the benefit of mutual defence in the tenuous geopolitical situation they found themselves in. This loose alliance of states formed the initial basis for cooperation which would soon characterise the confederative set up of the Monopoly of the following century, and increased their wealth and prosperity considerably by acting as middle men traders in the prosperous Median trade area.

Foundation

By the early 57th century much of Anaria was in turmoil. The migrations of ethnic Equitae, Emther and Wolgos peoples were beginning to place considerable strain on the stability and integrity of many states across Northern Anaria. In particular the two great empires of the period, the Parnethian Empire, which controlled large swathes of northern Anaria Major as far east as the Nixian Mountains, and the Orkanan Realm of Stoldavia, whose sphere of influence extended well beyond the island of Stoldavia, faced existential challenges if not imminent collapse. As the Migration Period continued into the 57th century these vast states began to retreat, and with them protection of trade. The sack of Gaaze in 5624 by marauding Equitae was a flashpoint for the demise of the eastern territories of the Parnethian Empire, who subsequently began to withdraw from the region.

The ever decreasing security and protection of trade provided by the two Empires presented the cities of Pastana with both a challenge and an opportunity. By banding together and forming alliances, the Pastanan states could provide an element of security during this turbulent period. The relative safety of the sea that such alliances began to establish, as well as the unique geographic position and terrain of the Cadrai Peninsula, provided the Pastanan states with a stability that allowed them to focus on exploiting the trade vacuum that was emerging on the continent rather than focusing on basic survival as preoccupied most on the continent.

As the Migrations continued, and city after city was sacked on both Stoldavia and mainland Anaria Major, more and more coastal regions looked to the sea for safety and stability, which in turn bolstered the coffers of the Median states who increasingly controlled trade. By 5630 the city of Valance had positioned itself as the most powerful of these maritime states, establishing a web of trading partners not just in Pastana but in modern day Tova, Ardennes and as far east as Auresia. In 5638 Valance invited representatives of all the Pastanan city states to what would be the First Conclave of Valance, where a formal alliance was agreed between the states and which removed almost all barriers to trade, establishing the Dragar Monopoly.

Initial expansion

In the years immediately after the Conclave of Valance the member states of the Monopoly exploited this newfound security by dramatically increasing trade. With Valance leading the way, more and more states began trading with the desperate Anarian continent, establishing the precursors to the Dragar Embassies (Pastanan: Legatioria; sing. Legatiorium), which established a physical presence in many cities and ensured favourable trading conditions for the Monopoly. As the century progressed, with the Migrations showing no sign of abating, many of these cities and communities became almost completely reliant upon supply from Pastana for goods, including basic foodstuffs. This inter-reliance between far-flung cities created a strong connection which would form the basis for the success and longevity of the Dragar Monopoly even after the Migration Period came to end in the following century.

In 5661 the Second Conclave of Valance expanded the Monopoly to include a number of cities outside of Pastana for the first time, principally cities on the Alsa Peninsula (modern-day Ardennes) which found themselves independent of a retreating Parnethian Empire. With this newfound independence, however, many cities and emerging petty kingdoms found themselves extremely vulnerable to the ongoing migrations as the Parnethians no longer protected their lands. Consequently, these cities, with Asola and Roccamonfina leading the way, looked increasingly to the security the Dragar Monopoly could provide. The decision to invite Asola and Roccamonfina to join the Monopoly was hotly debated at the Conclave, with some merchants concerned that committing themselves to helping defend the cities would expose their trade and profits to considerable risk. Nevertheless, after a vote of the Conclave, Asola and a number of other cities became the first member states outside Pastana to join the Monopoly. A number of further cities would join during the next half century.

Orkanan inheritance

A Dragar Orkanan shrine from Casandrino dating to c.5600. The shrine, while unorthodox in style, depicts the Wheel of Vind as well as Trunkbulls, clearly denoting the influence of the Orkanan Realm on early Monopoly religious culture.

During the early 56th century a concerted effort was launched by the clergy of the Orkanan Realm of Stoldavia to bring Fyrirhugun Orkanan to Pastana. Part of a much wider effort to spread the Orkanan religion to the rest of the continent, an effort which had embroiled the Realm in centuries of conflict in Eastern Anaria Major, known as the Theomachy, the conversion efforts saw significant success in the form of native Pastanan nobility and merchants converting to the new faith. However, the Sadarene Parnethian rulers of Pastana viewed the conversion efforts as part of a wider destabilising strategy employed by the Orkanan Realm to cement discord and undermine Parnethian control over the region. Consequently, the Parnethians entered into a number of conflicts with the Realm, known as the Orkano-Parnethian Wars in an attempt to cease Orkanan encroachments into her territory. The Wars were largely unsuccessful for the Parnethians, who were eventually forced by a combination of Orkanan military pressure and local rebellions to grant most of Pastana a form of independence, and recognise limited rights for Orkanan clergy to operate at her borders.

The enthusiastic conversion of many Pastanans, followed by zealous dissemination of Orkanan beliefs by recent Pastanan converts themselves, meant that by the time the Dragar Monopoly was established, most cities and the ruling classes that governed them identified strongly as Orkanans and looked to the Realm for political, economic and cultural guidance. Firmly in the Realm's sphere of influence, much to the consternation of the Parnethians, the Dragar Monopoly consequently placed their Orkanan religious identity at the forefront of the Monopoly's defensive mission - namely Orkanan states committed to defending one another from Sadarene Parnethian aggression.

However, the fall of the Orkanan Realm in 5713 shook the leaders of the Monopoly profoundly, and precipitated a newfound desire to expand the Monopoly to sure up security of the seas and the trade upon which the Monopoly relied. The wealth the Monopoly enjoyed during the otherwise hugely uncertain Migration Period was, due to increased religious confidence in the Pastanan cities, held to be a sign of Vind's blessing of the Monopoly. While trade would always be the driving force of the Monopoly, theology became an increasingly important intellectual factor among the Monopoly's leadership. Pastanan theologians subsequently argued intensely over the reasons for the fall of the spiritual and political home of Orkanan - the Realm of Stoldavia.

As Stoldavia fell into ruin, and stories of Wolgos atrocities spread like wildfire via the trading routes across the continent, many Pastanan theologians concluded that the reason for this divine punishment must reside in problems with Fyrirhugun doctrine. As a consequence, despite much controversy and disagreement, a native and distinct Orkanan doctrine began to emerge, the beginnings of Peratolian Orkanan, which increasingly sought to challenge the traditional doctrines of the Orkanan Realm. A rival canon was established in Valance, the first canon to be established outside of Stoldavia, and Orkanan clergy began to exploit the emerging nexus of Dragar Embassies and trade connections across northern Anaria to spread not only Orkanan, but the emerging Peratolian Congregational beliefs. By the 59th century, a distinct sense that the Dragar Monopoly had assumed the mantle of the Orkanan Realm as the leaders of Orkanan had established itself, and this religious motivation added to the already significant commercial desire to expand the Monopoly, although the clergy would never exercise a dominant voice within the Monopoly.

Migration threat

Main article: Migration Period

As the Migration Period continued, and with the Orkanan Realm of Stoldavia destroyed and the Parnethian Empire in retreat, the Dragar Monopoly faced a considerable set of challenges to the success of her early rise. Major groups of Equitae remained, for much of the late 57th century, the greatest threat to Dragaric survival and the success of her emerging trade empire. After raids and violence began to encroach into mainland Pastana across the Lanavian Isthmus (the narrow strip of land which connected the Cadrai Peninsula to Anaria Major), it became increasing clear to the leaders of the Monopoly that mainland Pastana was dangerously vulnerable to the same turmoil and destruction mainland Anaria was currently facing. However, with profits rising and the Monopoly expanding, complacency among the merchant classes postponed any commitment to shoring up the defences of Pastana.

However, in 5683 the city of Lasino (Pastanan: Lasinium) on the east coast of Pastana was sacked by a marauding Equitae army, with all other Pastanan cities fearing the same could befall them at any moment. The devastating destruction of Lasino propelled the Monopoly into action and a decision to establish a permanent military force under the command of a single Dragaric leader was taken at the Conclave of Santorenna in early 5684. With all Monopoly members obligated to contribute to the raising and upkeep of the force, the Conclave quickly rose the funds to hire several mercenary companies, as well as outfitting a number of domestic troops, and sent the force south under the Command of the Valantine general Marcus Mallenius to defend the border into Pastana, supported by a number of naval vessels.

The modern remains of the Lanavium Wall. The Wall was used as a defensive structure by the Monopoly for centuries after its initial completion.

The Lanavian Isthmus, only XX miles wide and extremely hilly, provided the Dragaric army a distinct advantage when they arrived, mopping up armed bands of Equitae as they went. Despite the relatively small area which the army had to guard, Mallenius nevertheless became aware that his small force, as professional and well supplied as it may be, would not be sufficient to confront a horde of Equitae of any great number. Discussion back in Valance turned to the need for a more long term solution to the ongoing migration crisis. Antonius Propertianus, a wealthy and influential merchant from Fognano, proposed the radical solution of building a wall across the length of the Lanavian Isthmus to keep the marauding groups of Equitae at bay indefinitely. Despite some objections, there was general agreement that such a massive project, as costly as it may be, was fundamentally vital to the survival and security of mainland Pastana and the Monopoly as a whole. The Valantine Conclave voted to levy a tax on all Monopoly states to pay for the wall.

Construction began in earnest, with the initial concern not the longevity or quality of the wall, but simply establishing a physical barrier as quickly as possible. Nevertheless, during the long process of construction, General Mallenius was forced to confront large numbers of Equitae raiding parties, as well as much more substantial hosts. The largest of which threatened to overwhelm Mallenius' forces in 5686, but the Equitae were paid off in considerable amounts of gold and silver and subsequently left. Although an effective short term solution, the Monopoly would find itself having to commit considerable amounts of treasure to paying off the larger groups of Equitae before the wall was completed in 5688. With the wall completed, mainland Pastana was considered relatively secure, with Equitae hosts turning away from the Lanavium Wall, as it came to be known, in search of easier pickings. The wall, an impressive feat of engineering which was strengthened over time with towers and a permanent guard force, provided the Monopoly states with considerable security, due mostly to the fortunate geography of the Cadrai Peninsula, and enabled Pastanans to place their focus on trade, at a time when most northern Anarian states were in a simple battle for survival.

The Parnethian Wars

Main article: Draco-Parnethian War

In the decades after the Orkanan Realm had collapsed, the Monopoly took advantage of the emerging power and commercial vacuum in the east and rose from strength to strength. Numerous cities had joined and subsequently expanded the influence of the Monopoly profoundly, with Embassies being established as far east as the Cheltic Isles. However, this newfound influence, as well as the substantial expansion of the naval forces at the disposal of Monopoly powers, was increasingly seen as a direct challenge to the ailing Parnethian Empire, already significantly diminished as a result of the chaotic migrations in Anaria Major. Trade disputes as well as tensions over the increased activity of Pastanan Orkanan clergy in Parnethian territory all contributed to King Emilios VI's decision to attempt to forestall the decline of his Empire and challenge the Dragar Monopoly directly.

The subsequent Draco-Parnethian War (5731-5734) was the first major existential challenge the Monopoly had faced since the Sack of Lasino in 5683. The Parnethian's primary aims during the war were to take advantage of their superiority in land forces by occupying Pastana, diminishing the Dragar fleet and disrupting as much trade as possible to force the Monopoly to come to the negotiating table and make concessions to Parnethian merchant interests and, if plausible, cede certain strategic territories, including Pizzoni in the central Medio. The war aims were designed to shore up Parnethian influence in the Medio Sea and break the Dragaric control of northern Anarian trade. However, at the Third Conclave of Valance, called shortly after the declaration of war and as Emilios' army approached the Lanavium Wall, the representatives of the members of the Monopoly decided upon a defensive strategy which involved employing merchant shipping to bolster the naval forces available and dispatching a small but highly professional force of soldiers under the command of Aurelianus Falcidius to hold Emilios at the Lanavium.

Faced with a Parnethian force equipped with catapults and over 50,000 men, Falcidius was the first and last defence for the Pastanan mainland. When Falcidius arrived at the Wall, Emilios was only a few days march away. Consequently, Falcidius prepared his defences and the subsequent Battle of Lanavium was fought. The first day of battle proved indecisive, with Emilios' forces unable to exploit a small breach in the Wall due to a local superiority of Dragaric archers. The second day Emilios attacked again and this time penetrated the Wall under heavy casualties from the well disciplined and heavily armed mercenary companies under Falcidius' command. The Dragars retreated into the hills and waged a series of hit and run attacks, utilising local knowledge of the hilly terrain to destroy supplies and the Parnethian lines of communication. Falcidius' tactics proved somewhat successful for a time, but Emilios eventually decided to ignore Falcidius, risking as he did his lines of communication back to Parnethian territory, and lay siege to Coccanilo in eastern Pastana.

The Battle of Derutta provided the Monopoly control of the Medio Sea for the rest of the War and marked the beginning of Dragaric naval supremacy that would endure for centuries.

Meanwhile, the Dragar fleets began blockading many of the Parnethian ports in the west. The Battle of Derutta, fought off the eastern coast of Parnethian controlled Tova, smashed the Parnethian fleet and allowed the Dragars to blockade much of the eastern coast of Anaria Minor. As the war progressed, the Dragars began smuggling capital as well as weapons into Tova to support local anti-Parnethian groups. These groups began to attack Parnethian supply depots, government buildings, and government and military officials. In late 5632 the city of Valamaggiore, under the promise of membership of the Monopoly, revolted, executed the Parnethian governor, and killed the local garrison. The Monopoly subsequently supplied the city with goods, including weapons, to shore up their defences. Many other cities joined suit, and the revolts turned into a widespread insurrection which the Parnethians struggled to contain.

The Battle of Sarvisium (modern Sarviso) in early 5633 saw Falcidius confront Emilios' forces in Pastana, who had moved west to threaten Valance after taking Coccanilo. The Battle was a tactical defeat for Falcidius, who was outnumbered significantly, but the devolving situation in Tova in the west prevented Emilios from capitalising on his victory and pushing on to Valance. Emilios' decision to retreat from Pastana only days after the Battle of Sarvisium has divided scholarly opinion, with some claiming it was his greatest strategic mistake, while others have argued that he ultimately had no choice, as the Tovan rebellions were significantly more dangerous to the integrity of his Empire than the failure of his forward operations in Pastana. Nevertheless, Emilios' decision to withdraw from Pastana meant that his principle war aim of occupying the Pastanan cities by utilising his superior land forces was forfeit, and with it any hope of victory. Emilios' forces made the long march home, extraction by sea not an option due to the vastly superior Dragaric fleets, and joined the Parnethian forces preparing for a counterattack against the rebellious cities in Tova.

The subsequent sieges and battles fought across Tova proved costly for both sides, but ultimately the pressure of the blockade of Parnethian ports, Dragaric superiority in resources, and rapidly draining Parnethian military resources to fight forced King Emilios to sue for peace. The Treaty of Valamaggiore secured not only advantageous trading rights for Monopoly merchants, but also the independence of many of the cities that had revolted. The War, which had been waged to forestall the decline of the Parnethian Empire, had inadvertently contributed instead to the further diminishment of her ailing power and the loss of Eastern Anaria Minor, while confirming in dramatic style the assent of the Monopoly.

Expansion of the Monopoly

Victory over the Parnethians had not only provided the Monopoly with unprecedented trading rights in the Medio Sea and established her as the dominant naval and maritime power of the region, but had set in motion a process of expansion that would last for centuries, bringing the entire northern coast of Anaria Major and Minor under the banner of the confederation. Under the terms of the Treaty of Valamaggiore, numerous cities in Tova on the western coast of the Medio Sea were granted independence from Parnethian control and subsequently joined the Monopoly as equal trading partners, with the Monopoly, in turn, guaranteeing their independence and protecting them against any future Parnethian attempt to reclaim their cities.

By 5735 over 10 newly independent cities had joined, including Valamaggiore, Viceno, and Fontanigorna, and expanded Dragar control over a considerable portion of the inland trade of Anaria Minor. The following year, encouraged by the recent successes of the Monopoly over the Parnethians and the increasingly lucrative trade network being built across the Medio, a number of cities in the east joined the Monopoly. Chief among these were the members of the so-called Pamdo League that controlled the Ancona Peninsula in modern day Auresia. The Pamdo League had been set up as a joint alliance between the cities of Zagrano and Oseidon, the latter located at the commanding western entrance of the Hattaro Straits. However, despite managing to consolidate in the wake of the Migrations and establish themselves as a maritime trading alliance in the hope of challenging the Dragar Monopoly, the ever increasing dominance of the Monopoly over Median trade and the crushing defeat of the Parnethians persuaded the merchants within the Pamdo League that more money was to be made within the Monopoly than attempting to trade against it. The joining of Oseidon in particular proved welcome to Dragaric traders who would make full use of the strategic location of the city at the mouth of the Hattaro Straits.

Over the following 50 years more and more states, most of them city states, joined the Monopoly, expanding Dragaric control over much of Northern Anaria Major and the Medio region. The most important member to join in this period was undoubtedly the Auresian Empire. Occupying a large swathe of territory at the extreme north-east region of Anaria Major east of the Nixian Mountains, the Auresian Empire was by far the largest state to have joined the Monopoly, and would remain so for the life of the confederation. Primarily a land power which had managed to survive the tumultuous Migration Period by retreating east and strengthening her ancient bastions, Auresia nevertheless became increasingly reliant upon Dragaric traders to supply her cities, keep her people fed, and eventually supply mercenaries and other soldiers. The decision to join the Monopoly would prove to drastically change the dynamic of the Monopoly, as although at her weakest point due to the Migrations when she joined in 5760, she would soon recover and come to seek a dominating influence within the Monopoly centuries later. Many within the Monopoly questioned Auresia's motives on applying to join, and some argued that the fundamental nature of a large empire was contrary to the existing political make-up and mercantile spirit that underpinned the Monopoly. Despite these concerns, the promise of expanding the Monopoly still further and the lucrative trading opportunities that would open up with the Anarian interior proved too tempting, and Auresia was admitted to join the Monopoly by a majority vote at the Conclave of Vallerona.

In the first half of the 59th century, the Monopoly expanded further, this time in the west with the joining of many cities in modern day Casella in Anaria Minor. The slow motion collapse of the Parnethian Empire, culminating in the dissolution of the Empire in 5865, precipitated the destabilisation of Casella and the eventual independence of many cities and regions. The city of Crescentino was the first such city to join the Monopoly after securing a tenuous independence in 5815, which the Monopoly subsequently guaranteed. Attempting to take advantage of the crumbling ability of the Parnethians to control her eastern provinces, many Dragaric states began actively undermining Parnethian control of the region, funding rebellion and cutting off vital trade supplies to key locations. This process precipitated the slow motion withdraw of Parnethia from the region until the Empire's collapse in 5865. Many cities subsequently joined, including Compagna, Pena, and Arrento. The acquisition of these states by the Monopoly, in particular, secured a vital supply of timber needed for the building and maintenance of large trading vessels.

Commercial Zenith

Dragar Imperium

Dragar Schism

Abolishment of the Monopoly

Organisation and Institutions

Dragar Conclave

The remains of the Conclavium in Valance, the building where numerous Dragaric Conclaves were held. Not much of the building survives today, but the building was amongst the grandest in the Monopoly when it was built in the 5740s.

The Conclave (from the Pastanan conclave meaning 'room' or 'enclosed space that can be locked') was the peculiar form of meeting practised during most of the Monopoly's existence. Made up of envoys from the constituent states of the Monopoly, the Conclave's powers and purpose varied significantly over the course of the Monopoly's 700 years. The first Dragaric Conclave, the First Conclave of Valance, held in 5638, was simply a meeting where all the states that wanted to form an alliance officially joined what would soon be known as the Dragar Monopoly. Later Conclaves, such as the Conclave of Santorenna (5684), had more overtly executive functions, although the decisions agreed upon at that Conclave were not legally binding and it was up to the individual states to commit to the collectively agreed upon course of action - in the case of Santorenna, to contribute to the raising of the Monopoly's first military force. In times of war, the Conclave enjoyed even broader powers, with collective grand strategy being decided upon and directed by the Conclave itself (at least in theory - during the Parnethian War, for instance, Valance in fact directed most of strategic planning; this would recur with the dominance of Auresian strategists during the X War).

The Conclaves were attended by representatives known as Nuntii (sing. Nuntius), commonly translated as envoys. These envoys were sent by their respective city or state to attend the meetings, represent their interests, and vote on tabled motions. Who the Monopoly states sent (if indeed they sent one)1 and what powers they provided their envoy was up to the individual state, although from the 58th century onward the position of envoy was highly coveted as a means of acquiring prestige and also providing a unique opportunity to exert political power and influence in Monopoly affairs, and thus leverage political influence back home. Particularly in the larger and wealthier states, envoys came to represent some of the most powerful merchants of their respective states, and competition to be sent to the Conclave was fierce.

Votes were held on the basis of a general consensus - consensus in this case meaning an absence of protest. After a discussion, the proposals which gained sufficient support were dictated aloud to the scribe and passed as a binding (or non-binding as the case may be) Dictus (lit. something having been said) if the attendees did not object; those favouring alternative proposals unlikely to get sufficient support were obliged to remain silent during this procedure. If consensus could not be established on a certain issue, it was found instead in the appointment of a number of Monopoly members who were then empowered to work out a compromise. Votes, and the Conclaves in general, were overseen and chaired by the Secretary (Secretarius, lit. the keeper of secrets), originally a loosely defined role primarily responsible for setting the agenda, counting votes and formally writing out dictii. The secretary was an elected position from amongst the envoys themselves and served for the maximum duration of the Conclave session, although previous secretaries could chair numerous Conclaves. Although initially purely bureaucratic in nature, over the centuries the Secretary became an increasingly powerful individual. By the Dragar Imperium, the Secretary wielded significant powers and was almost always indirectly appointed by the Auresian Emperor.

Although the majority of Conclaves in the first three hundred years of the Monopoly were located in Valance, the capital of the Monopoly, Conclaves could and were held in any city within the Monopoly. Towards the end of the Monopoly and the establishment of the Dragar Imperium, however, Conclaves were rarely held outside of Cedelphia, the capital of Auresia, and after the Dragar Schism of 6234 were exclusively held at Cedelphia, reflecting the dominant influence exerted by Auresia over the remains of the alliance.

Embassies

Currency

Trade

Pastana itself was relatively poor in lumber and entirely lacking in quality timbers for building the most robust and modern ships. The highest quality lumber was located in north-eastern Anaria Minor, modern day Casella, but this area remained under Parnethian control until the 59th century, and so supply of these resources was unstable. Seeing the supply of quality timber as vital to their maritime interests, many of the Pastanan Dragar cities, with Valance leading the way, established trade routes with Southern Thultannia and even as far as southern Stoldavia to secure the supply of lumber needed to outfit their increasingly large trading fleets.

Demographics

Religion

Cities

The characteristic political unit of the Dragar Monopoly was the city state. Although not all members of the Monopoly operated a city state political system - some in fact were large federative and unitary states, chief among them the Auresian Empire - the vast majority of members joined the Monopoly as independent or semi-independent cities. The forms of government employed varied significantly, from traditional monarchies and autocracies, to complex commercial oligarchies and republics, but almost all had a strong, if not dominant, merchant class which naturally influenced the governance of the city. The Migration Period created a dramatic rise in the size of cities across northern Anaria as people fled behind the safety of city walls; a phenomenon which the success of the inter-connectivity of the Dragar Monopoly formulated into a sustainable trend. In the centuries after the end of the Migration Period, Dragar cities continued to expand and boasted, at the time, some of the largest and most urbanised populations in Anaria.

The Anisoran scholar P. Andrea di Taglianoa argues that the primacy of the city state across the Median basin during the Dragaric Age was fundamentally due to a combination of the instability caused by the tumultuous Migration Period on the continent and the subsequent opportunities of relative safety the sea provided. The danger of marauding armies and the inability of large states to maintain communications and control over expansive territories fostered the growth of 'city islands', wherein cities, particularly coastal ports, would withdraw behind the protection of their walls and look to the sea to provide the resources and goods they require rather than the surrounding countryside. The success of this model, which is evident by the simple survival of these cities during a time of otherwise brutal survival, also helps scholars to understand the remarkable inter-connectivity and inter-reliance the Dragar Monopoly created, exploited, and reinforced over the following centuries. Until the dawn of the Dragar Imperium and the growing propensity for large states to consolidate across the continent in the early 7th millennium, city states remained the dominant political system across the Medio Sea.

A map of the major towns and cities of the Dragar Monopoly.

List of Monopoly states

Below is a selective list of some of the major and most important states that were at some point members of the Dragar Monopoly. At its peak in the 61st century, the Monopoly boasted over 250 members, ranging from city states and principalities to kingdoms and even an Empire. States are listed primarily by their modern name, with the contemporary Pastanan name which the state would have been known as within the Monopoly also provided.

State Capital Now part of Type Joined Left Pastanan name Notes
Valance Valance Anisoran Empire City State 5638 6234 Valantium Capital of the Dragar Monopoly from 5638-6187. Left the Monopoly in the wake of the Dragar Schism of 6234, followed by many other states.
Auresia Cedelphia Auresia Empire 5760 - Auresia The largest state in terms of land area as well as the only Empire to join the Monopoly. Cedelphia was the Capital of the Dragar Monopoly from 6187-6315 before the remains of the Monopoly were absorbed into the Auresian Empire.
Santorenna Santorenna Anisoran Empire City State 5638 6234 Santorrenium An original member of the First Valantine Conclave.
Fognano Fognano Anisoran Empire City State 5638 6234 Fabrignium An original member of the First Valantine Conclave.
Monferrato Monferrato Anisoran Empire City State 5638 6234 Amonaforium An original member of the First Valantine Conclave.
Pilano Pilano Anisoran Empire City State 5638 6234 Apellium An original member of the First Valantine Conclave.
Vallerona Vallerona Anisoran Empire City State 5638 6234 Varolenum An original member of the First Valantine Conclave.
Mozzagrogna Mozzagrogna Anisoran Empire City State 5638 6234 Manvanium An original member of the First Valantine Conclave.
Casandrino Casandrino Anisoran Empire City State 5638 6234 Casadium An original member of the First Valantine Conclave.
Coccanilo Coccanilo Anisoran Empire City State 5642 6234 Corralium
Ponteginora Ponteginora Anisoran Empire City State 5644 6234 Metapaestum
Linzana Linzana Anisoran Empire City State 5651 6234 Alissenium
Asola Asola Ardennes Principality 5689 6239 Assolia
Lorrance Roccamonfina Ardennes Principality 5689 6239 Lorentina
Valamaggiore Valamaggiore Anisoran Empire City State 5735 6234 Valammium The first state to join the Monopoly after declaring her independence during the Draco-Parnethian War.
Viceno Viceno Anisoran Empire City State 5735 6234 Vicennua Joined the Monopoly after declaring independence during the Draco-Parnethian War.
Parrone Parrone Anisoran Empire City State 5735 6234 Paronia Joined the Monopoly after declaring independence during the Draco-Parnethian War.
Vattoria Fontanigorna Anisoran Empire Principality 5735 6234 Vattoria Joined the Monopoly after declaring independence during the Draco-Parnethian War.
Oseidon Oseidon Auresia City State 5736 - Ostidium Originally a member of the Pamdo League, joined in conjunction with Zagrano.
Zagrano Zagrano Auresia City State 5736 - Torollentia Originally a member of the Pamdo League, joined in conjunction with Oseidon.
Florincia Florincia Auresia City State 5741 - Florincia
Portoga Porto Imperiale (Solanus Morus) Auresia Kingdom 5752 - Portorgua
Calatandra Travero Auresia Principality 5753 - Callevandrium
Spelantra Prefati Auresia Principality 5792 - Spolantium
Crescentino Crescentino Anisoran Empire City State 5815 6234 Cresentium
Serrada Serrada City State 5822 6234 Serrentium
Compagna Compagna Anisoran Empire City State 5848 6203 Mevania
Pena Pena Anisoran Empire City State 5864 6207 Pena
Capdevilla Capdevilla Errea City State 5875 - Villa Cadua
Arrento Arrento Anisoran Empire City State 5876 6203 Arrentium
Răutrasează Răutrasează Becuvitatia City State 5892 6215 Rotrassium
Caparica Caparica Errea Principality 5908 - Caparicum

Legacy

See also

History  History portal
Anaria  Anaria portal

Notes

1 Many of the smaller states did not send an envoy to the Conclave, but rather sent a single envoy to collectively represent a band of neighbouring cities if a local consensus on a particular issue or issues had been established.

References

a di Tagliano, P.A. (7448) Ascensus Status Civitatis in Aetate Dragarana. Pena. 11-12. (Hallish: The Rise of the City State in the Dragaric Age)

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